Oregon State Falls to Washington State, 83-73
Feb. 9, 2012
CORVALLIS, Ore. - Jared Cunningham, the Pac-12 Conference's leading scorer, tallied a league career-high 33 points, but it wasn't enough as Oregon State (15-9, 5-7) fell to Washington State (13-11, 5-7) Thursday night at Gill Coliseum.
"That was certainly not expected," Oregon State head coach Craig Robinson said. "It was a disappointing performance. I was worried about having one game like that because we had been playing so well at home and it had been a while since we have had a horrible outing. This was a horrible outing. I feel bad for those guys in the locker room. They are still young and they still have to understand what it takes week in and week out to be a good team. We are still learning that."
Cunningham, a candidate for the league's Player of the Year honor, hit 10-of-20 from the field, including a career-high five three-point field goals to score 30+ points for the third time this season, but the rest of Beavers were 12-of-39 (31%) and just 5-of-21 from beyond the arc.
"It is really frustrating because you don't get a many outings like that and you want to be able to take advantage of it in a positive way," Robinson said about Cunningham's performance. "He can't even take advantage of it because we didn't win and we played so poorly. He seemed to be the only thing going tonight."
Cunningham hit a pair of threes to open the game as OSU built a 7-4 lead, but the Beavers would never have the lead again and were outscored over the final 5:07 of the first half 17-3 to trail 46-31 at the intermission.
The Cougars built the lead to as many as 19 points twice in the second half, before OSU made a late rally to cut the gap to eight with 29 seconds remaining in the contest.
WSU hit 52 percent from the field on 28-of-54, including 6-of-12 from three-point range. The Cougars also turned 14 Beaver turnovers into 26 points while the Beavers uncharacteristically turned 10 WSU turnovers into only seven points.
"It was a lot of breakdowns," Robinson said about the Beavers' defensive effort. "As a coach you are trying to figure out as it is going on, and try to prepare for it before it happens. The thing that comes to my mind first is that they were listening to everyone telling them that they won two out of three on the road and four of their last five, and it looked like to me that all they needed to do was show up to win. That is not the case and that is self-evident."
Oregon State returns to action Sunday at 2:30 in a nationally televised game on FSN with a regional telecast on ROOT Sports against the co-league-leading Washington Huskies.
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